Monitor cookies

Website Monitoring Magazine

koality.io measures the number of cookies set, shows the domains that set these cookies and alerts when there are too many. Why this "small" feature has a huge effect in complying with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is what this article will show.

By now, all websites are required to handle their customers' data cleanly. This applies to blogs, editorial websites and just as much to online stores. For everyone. It is not simply allowed to release data about the customer to third parties without the customer's consent. However, this is exactly what many cookies do. They often store data of the customer to make him identifiable again at a later time. Actually, however, such cookies are no longer welcome.

Verification by koality.io

Every hour koality.io measures the number of cookies set and the corresponding domains that set this cookie. And exactly this number is used to trigger the alert. Let's say we have 5 cookies that we need to set for technical reasons. These are allowed. But as soon as a 6th cookie (or more) is added, you should take a close look at it. There can be three reasons for this:

  • The website sets another technical cookie that is actually needed. If this is the case, then you can simply set the new threshold for monitoring to 6 cookies.

  • A new cookie was added that was forgotten to be blocked by the cookie consent banner. In this case, it should be improved again and the workflow for this cookie should be adjusted.

  • The cookie consent banner is broken. If this is the case, often not only one new cookie will be added, but many. Here you have to take action immediately, because now the risk of a warning is the greatest. What is exciting here is the fact that you yourself, as the operator of a website, do not even notice whether the banner is working. You may have clicked it away ages ago and rarely see it on your own page.

All three cases are at least one reason to be informed. Two of them are even very good ones that result in actions. So you can monitor your cookies via a simple threshold, very safe.

To better grasp the issue, koality.io not only shows the number of cookies measured, but also the domains through which they were set. Indeed, it is often the case that you lose track yourself and then this list can be very helpful.

Some cookies are filtered

For our tests we always use a real browser. In our case, it is a current Chrome browser that is used. Since we send a lot of requests to the websites throughout the day and week, we decided to block various tracking pixels by default. This means that in many constellations, we will never set a Google Analytics cookie, for example, because this service is blacklisted. This is important to understand in case a cookie is missing from the list.

Vision 2021

We plan to implement an extension in koality.io that clicks away the cookie consent banner before analyzing a web page. This will then allow us to make sure that all the cookies we need, have been set after this action.

It's nice that you are reading our magazine. But what would be even nicer is if you tried our service. koality.io offers extensive Website monitoring especially for web projects. Uptime, performance, SEO, security, content and tech.

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